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By Jaryd Cline
Sports editor 

Pirates get back on track with GCGL win over Klickwood


January 17, 2018

Jaryd Cline

Klickwood junior Hunter Dawson fires away from 3-point range during the team's Jan. 5 contest against Yakama Tribal

The Bickleton Pirates boys hoops team bounced back from their recent slide with a 51-42 Greater Columbia Gorge League home win over Klickwood (Klickitat and Glenwood) on Dec. 12, but couldn't keep up with the Yakama Tribal Eagles a day later in an 84-34 loss in Toppenish. Klickwood also faced one of the tougher teams in the league on Saturday, falling 84-15 to the top-ranked Sunnyside Christian Knights.

Friday's win over the Vandals snapped Bickleton's current three-game skid while also giving the team its first GCGL victory of the season after previous losses to Trout Lake (Jan. 5) and Lyle-Wishram (Jan. 6).

The Pirates were still missing junior big man Cody Strader, who missed last Tuesday's 58-47 loss to Prescott, and didn't play in either of the weekend games either.

Playing in the first of two regular season matchups against the Vandals, Bickleton jumped out in front in the first quarter and didn't look back. Behind a first-quarter shooting clinic from junior Cesareo Arriaga, the Pirates ran out to a 16-9 lead over the first eight minutes and led the rest of the way.

Arriaga drained three 3-pointers in the opening period and went 4-4 from the free throw line to finish with 15 of the team's 16 first quarter points. He went on to finish with 37 points. Hitting all seven of his free throws while also connecting on six shots from beyond the arc.

Both teams were missing main contributors though, with Strader out for the Pirates and senior Easton Atchley and junior Jeremiah Larson sitting for Klickwood. Atchley should return soon after hurting his ankle very early in the season while Larson has missed the team's last four games.

After the Pirates opened with the early lead, the Vandals wouldn't quite let them pull away. Klickwood matched the Pirates' 12 second-quarter points with 3-pointers coming from junior Jacob Wenz and senior Derrick Green, and trailed 40-31 entering the fourth quarter.

But the Vandals couldn't rally in the fourth. Both teams scored 11 points in the quarter as the Pirates snapped their slide while the Vandals dropped their sixth straight game.

Along with his game-high 37 points, Arriaga also added 13 rebounds, six steals and three blocks, and freshman Christian Arriaga connected twice from three-point range and finished with seven points while handing out three assists.

Junior Michael Gannon also hit from long range, senior Hunter Wentz recorded three assists and two points, and sophomore Dakota Riggs grabbed seven boards and set up his teammates with three assists.

Wenz was the high point man for the Vandals with 17 including a 3-pointer in the second quarter, and Green and junior Markus Kessinger each had nine points and one 3-pointer each.

Pirates 16 12 12 11 - 51

Vandals 9 12 10 11 - 42

Bickleton scoring: Cesareo Arriaga 37, Christian Arriaga 7, Gannon 3, Wentz 2, Scott McBride 2.

Klickwood scoring: Wenz 17, Green 9, Kessinger 9, Hunter Dawson 5, Hunter Clack 2.


The local GCGL teams had their hands full with the top two teams in the league on Friday. The Pirates fell to the No. 5 ranked Yakama Tribal Eagles while the No. 1 ranked Knights of Sunnyside Christian knocked off the Vandals.

They are ranked in those positions according to the WIAA RPI Rankings, which take into effect winning percentage, opponents' winning percentage, opponents' opponents' winning percentage, and strength of schedule.

Against the Pirates in Toppenish, the Eagles got rolling early and didn't stop. They scored 80 points or more for the fourth time this season and held Bickleton to its second lowest scoring total of the season.

Tribal likes to get out and run all game and get easy transition baskets with its quick guards, and on Saturday scored over 20 points in each the first three quarters. Bryce Strom finished with 34 points to lead the team, hitting 15 field goals.

Cesareo Arriaga scored 11 for the Pirates while Riggs finished with eight points.

Pirates 11 4 9 10 - 34

Eagles 23 20 28 13 - 84

Bickleton scoring: Cesareo Arriaga 11, Riggs 8, Christian Arriaga 7, John Cardenas 4, McBride 2, Wentz 2.

Tribal scoring: Bryce Strom 34, Bryan Strom 18, Isiah Strom 15, Justin Andrews 6, Ezra Jem 4, Justin Strom 4, Noah Pastrama 2, Yenowa Eagleheart 2.

Last Tuesday

The Pirates couldn't get back on track during last week's nonleague contest against Prescott, falling to the Tigers 58-47.

Playing without Strader, the Arriagas handled the majority of the scoring load, combining for 38 of the team's 47 points. Cesareo led Bickleton with a team-high 26 points and Christian hit one 3-pointer in each quarter for 12 points.

Bickleton 13 9 12 13 - 47

Prescott 14 14 22 10 - 58

Bickleton scoring: Cesareo Arriaga 26, Christian Arriaga 12, Hunter Wentz 5, Dakota Riggs 2, Scott McBride 2.

Up next

The Pirates are back in action this weekend, hosting the Trout Lake Mustangs on Friday starting at 5 p.m. before traveling to Sunnyside for a matchup with the Knights.

The Mustangs knocked off the Pirates 70-39 in the team's first meeting on Jan. 5. The Knights, at 11-1 overall have only lost to Class 1As Lynden Christian.

Klickwood is on the road Friday for their second contest against Yakama Tribal and has Saturday off. They return for a Jan. 23 road meeting against Trout Lake.


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